Hello Epiexperts! There are a couple recent open access papers to point out to you this week. Both relate to ovarian cancer progression and desensitization to the chemotherapy, Cisplatin. Cisplatin resistance is the primary obstacle to surviving ovarian cancer. These cancers are rare thankfully, but the 5 year survival rate is only 15-20%.
Epigentics researchers are actively engaged in confronting this challenging disease. There are several Phase II clinical trials in progress for individual and combinational therapies using DNA methylation inhibitors and histone deacetlase (HDAC) inhibitors.
Until those epigenetics based therapy trial results are available, as things stand, the current outlook is bleak. Please see this piece by Donna Trussell, in the Washington Post. She writes from her personal perspective with 10 years experience as an ovarian cancer patient, and she includes real world data. Ovarian cancer drug fail (and that’s the good news?) She wonders…Why haven’t the fatality rate drops in ovarian kept pace with more substantial drops in other cancers? Unfortunately the early detection by ultrasound trials didn’t get anywhere. She also notes with dissapointment, the 2011 clinical results of bevacizumab (Avastin), which is an anti-angiogenesis drug, a la the late great Judah Folkman.
Please see the following recent open access epigenetics pubs;
#1. Wei Yu et al. Global Analysis of DNA Methylation by Methyl-Capture Sequencing Reveals Epigenetic Control of Cisplatin Resistanc ein Ovarian Cancer Cell. (Dec. 2011) PloS one This group analyzed the methylomes of cisplatin sensitive and cisplatin resistant ovarian cell lines using MDB-seq. They provide these dataset publicly, and also identified several genes, subject to epigenetic control, to target for cisplatin resistance research.
#2. Kazimierz O. Wrzeszczynski et al. Identification of Tumor Suppressors and Oncogenes from Genomic and Epigenetic Features in Ovarian Cancer (Jan 2012) PloS one This group used several carefully designed methods to generate and analyze combined data on copy number variation, DNA methylation and expression levels in ovarian cancers – with the goal of identifying genes with key pathological roles in individual ovarian tumors. Super rational bioinformatics.
Let’s build on this information and get some good news out there!
Yu W, Jin C, Lou X, Han X, Li L, He Y, Zhang H, Ma K, Zhu J, Cheng L, & Lin B (2011). Global analysis of DNA methylation by methyl-capture sequencing reveals epigenetic control of Cisplatin resistance in ovarian cancer cell. PloS one, 6 (12) PMID: 22216282